There are about a 100 Free Agents who are not signed. That seems like a large number, but less than ten are really top players. The rest are likely minor league contract players. This is the list I have:
- Bryce Harper
- Manny Machado
- Dallas Keuchel
- Marwin Gonzalez
- Gio Gonzalez
- Josh Harrison
- Clay Buchholz
- Ervin Santana
- Evan Gattis
Certainly, not all are even starters,in fact, I could make the argument that only the TOP FOUR might be difference makers, and they are not without warts. Would I like any of those players? Sure… at the right price. Keuchel can be very good or very bad. Marwin Gonzalez is a LH Kike Hernandez… but without the glove. Harper and Machado are way overrated and the rest could be OK at the right price. Buchholz could be a nice piece in the pen, but he wants to start, so there’s nothing to see here folks… move along!
Here’s what I do know:The Padres and Phillies are more than willing to to make a dope-fiend move to sign these players. John Middleton, the Phillies owner, said that they were willing to be “a little bit stupid” on how they spend. I think they will do that. At this juncture, I would guess that Machado ends up in San Diego and Harper ends up in Philadelphia. However, it’s possible both end up in SD. Either way, those are straight-up Dope-Fiend moves!
At any rate, it seems to me that this 2019 Dodger team is just about set.A lot can or will be decided in Spring Training, but for now, Max Muncy is the 1B, Chris Taylor is the 2B and Cody Bellinger is the starting Right Fielder. Of course, Justin Turner holds down 3B and Corey Seager is the shortstop with Kike Hernandez backing him up… as well as just about every other position.
All that’s left is Catcher and Left Field. That’s not how I would pick to configure the lineup. I have different opinions, but all-in-all, I am OK with Taylor at 2B (he can play it), Muncy at 1B (probably his best position), and Cody in RF – he will be better than Puig there. LF is between Verdugo and Pederson. Pederson has to have a caddy (a RH hitter), but Verdugo shoudl be able to play against RH and LH pitchers.
The team they start with may not be the team they end with.That’s a given. I think Verdugo and Pederson will get their shot, but the fact of the matter is that the Dodgers still need another RH power bat. That is Nick Castellanos. PERIOD! Maybe Pederson and/or Verdugo will show up and show out, but if they don’t, I can see Casty being a Dodger at the trade deadline.
Verdugo or Pederson and Toles and another prospect could get that done.Frankly, I would rather have Nick Castellanos in LF than Bryce Harper. The Dodgers will start with a LH hitter in LF, but I think they will end with Casty. Write that down.
So, there are just a few days until the first game.I can’t wait. It doesn’t look like I can make it to Camelback Ranch again this years (6 years in a row). I thought I had it all planned out – a nice business and then sell it and retire. However, the business model is blowing up! Crazy fast growth! I have so many other things to do that I can’t seem to fit it in, but it’s fun and I love it! Life is good!
I will be in Los Angeles February 25th to the 28th for business.Unfortunately, there are no games then. I’ll probably be back in June or July and see a game or two. But, if you can go to Camelback Ranch, by all means do so. It’s a blast! It’s almost as good as Vero Beach… but that’s a story for another day. Here’s what the lineup could look like in August:
- Pollock CF
- Seager SS
- Turner 3B
- Bellinger RF
- Castellanos LF
- Muncy 1B
- Taylor 2B
- Ruiz C
Conventional wisdom is that Will Smith will be promoted to the Show before Kaybear, Balderdash! Smith and Pederson (or Verdugo) will be traded for Castellanos…. or not! 😉
- In case you are interested (I’m not), here are theZIPS PROJECTIONSfor the Dodgers in 2019.
- Where is Andrew Toles? Is there a reason to be concerned? I hear conflicting reports…
- Corey Seager is on track to start on Opening Day… unless he isn’t!
Photo Credit: Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers